Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Baring it All!

   The hand of the maker. Watching this short interview excerpt with one of my favorite artists Shaun Tan   really sounded home the importance of sharing process. The audience has been in front of the curtain for so long that a bit of boredom has set in. A kind of over-saturation of greatness and polish that people lose the sense of the hand of the maker. They never realize just how much work goes in to the finished product. Letting them peak behind the curtain builds a greater appreciation for the final product. It also inspires other creators as process is demystified.

The realization that every artist started somewhere, and that not every thing they have executed was a work of genius, gives a new creative courage to press on and make progress in their own work. Hence the pressure to preform on every single stroke is gone and a free and honest playfulness breathes life into a work.  That is were progress is made. Those who know the "zone" know what I'm talking about. We slip into a state of heightened creativity where time melts away. Where pressures and pains, the worries of the day, are replaced by the joy of creating. The more time we are there the more progress we make. We are happier as individuals as well. Our friends and family may not understand this, and wonder how we can spend so much time in our pursuits.  We hope that in the end the work will justify.
and so now...
Sam bares it all!!!
Now I'm posting this in a hope that it will encourage the fledgling, and at worst, amuse the pro. Please take into consideration my LONG hiatus form the arts in passing judgment on this work.
CRINGE! done 4 yrs ago.
the latest iteration 
I have been working on Ouwangalaymah! for years now and I've spent many hours in the zone. I cringe in sharing this, but this really helps illustrate the point I wanted to make in this post about artistic progress. Demystifying the process. There is no magic, no potion or pact with the devil. And there are no short cuts either.  you just have to work work work!  plain and simple. There is a period of frustration in the beginning when you know what is in your head and how great it will be. Getting others to see it, that's the challenge! This is where perseverance pays off. You gotta keep on at it until you know you've got it right.
  The very process of making comics helps in developing the "Chops" your looking for. you start with an idea, you sketch it, refine it, you pencil it, and then you ink and color it.

you pencil it,
you refine it in the inking stage.
erasing the initial sketch is always a fun part.

And then you add color! 

you consider the whole and make further adjustments,
somewhere along the line you get it right.
I'll be sharing more in my process as I go. I hope as I mentioned earlier, that this will encourage you to keep hammering away at it because you will see progress in your work.   

Monday, April 11, 2011

Slowly Making Progress

Well now that Wondercon is behind me, I am pressing on to try and finnish #3 ASAP. I have been loosely giving myself until October. I feel that I will finish much sooner than that, but at least I will have it in hand for APE. Hoping too to have our Steampunk Anthology #2 done by then as well. Here are a few tidbits from #3. A few inks.

Monday, April 4, 2011


Wondercon was a BLAST! and I would like to thank everyone who stopped by the table to chat. And a most humble and appreciative Thank you Thank you Thank you to all those who bought my books! I hope that you enjoy them and I promise to get busy right away on finishing #3.

Over the course of the weekend, I had many stimulating conversations with individuals, several centering on the fact that in public schools, art programs are disappearing. one valiant woman, post retirement age, is trying to stick it out and battle her local bay area school boards for the meager programs that they have. the room that she has to teach is not even equipped with a sink! Crayons, Recycled paper, pens paper & glue, the meager supplies that she does have are donated of provided by the parents and a few well meaning individuals. She is afraid to retire because there is no one else to continue the fight. She knows with here leaving there would be no art programs at all.

Perhaps there is some way in which we all can help by being aware of the plight of the arts in the schools. An artless society is an empty society. It's like opening our own chest to sell our hearts for the meat. we home school our sons so I can assure you it is an artistically rich environment. Perhaps that is the way our hearts can be saved by ensuring that we as individuals and families make place every day to enrich our lives through the arts.

APE is in October! 1st & 2nd. I do hope to see you there! We should have #3 ready by then. Take care and thanks again for READING!!! :o)